Introduction to Accessibility
A variety of issues surrounding people with disabilities are receiving increased attention. Legal actions and complaints have raised the populations’ general awareness on some aspects of accessibility but fall short of providing a holistic view. In this elearning class, we will take a journey of discovery beginning with what it means to have a disability and how assistive technologies (AT) bring a level of equality. We will then take a short journey into laws and standards that have attempted to make an environment where people vision, hearing, mobility, and cognitive challenges can thrive. And finally, the class will discuss some of the finer points of etiquette that will help facilitate communication and interaction in both professional and personal lives.
The goal of the course is to foster cultural change by creating awareness of the need for accessible products while presenting high-level methods to improve the accessibility of products.
Anyone in a public or private organization who wants to know more about interacting with persons with disabilities.
Learning Outcomes / Objectives
When participants have successfully completed this course, they will be able to:
- Describe the benefits of including accessibility in their organizational practices.
- Describe five categories of disabilities.
- Identify types of assistive technologies used to overcome disabilities.
- Explain the laws and standards that apply to accessibility.
- Recall the proper etiquette and language to use when working with a person who has a disability.
Module 1: The Value of Accessibility
Describe the benefits of including accessibility in their organizational practices.
- Describe how everyone benefits when accessibility is incorporated into an organization.
- Self-sufficiency (personal life)
- Hiring and career advancement (professional life)
- Audience expansion
Module 2: What it Means to Have a Disability
Describe five categories of disabilities.
- Describe vision impairments and how they impact a person who has them.
- Outline hearing impairments and how they impact a user who has them.
- Recall mobility impairments and how they impact users who have them.
- Outline cognitive impairments and how they impact users who have them.
- Describe vocalization impairments and how they impact users who have them.
- Explain why common misconceptions about disabilities are wrong.
- Recognize the difference between permanent and temporary disabilities.
- Explain how digital accessibility can be useful to everyone.
Module 3: Digital Accessibility
Explain how assistive technology enables an individual with disabilities to access information in a manner equivalent to an individual without disabilities.
- Recognize the goal of assistive technology.
- Define assistive technology.
- List assistive technologies employed by users who have visual impairments.
- No vision / Extreme Low Vision—must rely on AT for perception
- Low vision—must rely on AT for perception
- Color blindness
- Recognize potential assistive technologies employed by users who have hearing disabilities.
- Closed captioning
- List potential assistive technologies employed by users with mobility impairments.
- Keyboard navigation
- Eye movement tracking
- Describe potential assistive technologies employed by users with cognitive impairments.
- Multi-lingual support
Module 4: Laws and Standards for Accessibility
Explain the laws and standards that apply to accessibility.
- Name the United States’ laws and standards that apply to creating content for users of assistive technology.
- US state and local laws
- Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504 and 508)
- Describe how to confirm whether a product meets accessibility standards.
- VPAT / Accessibility Conformance Report (US Public Sector)
- WCAG Conformance Claims (Private Sector)
- When does accessibility interact with a vendor supplied product?
- List the four primary principles of WCAG.
- Describe the three levels of WCAG.
Module 5: The Etiquette of Interacting with a Person Who Has a Disability
Recall the proper etiquette and language to use when interacting with a person who has a disability.
- Describe why etiquette matters when interacting with people who have disabilities.
- Inclusive communications
- Personal interactions
- Explain the appropriate terminology for communicating with people with disabilities.
- Putting the person first
- Avoiding negative terminology
- Describe strategies for physical contact with people who have a disability.
- Interacting with a person who is blind
- Interacting with a person who is D/deaf
- Interacting with a person who is mobility challenged
- Outline the importance of respecting a person’s privacy.
- Privacy concerns
- Not making assumptions
- Recognize how small changes can make a big difference.
Module 6: Next Steps
Identify additional resources to learn more about accessibility, based on their role in an organization.
- Identify additional resources for content creators.
- Identify additional resources for legal professionals.
- Identify additional resources for procurement professionals.